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US Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi arrived Saturday in Armenia, days after the Caucasus nation’s lethal border clashes with Azerbaijan jeopardised Western efforts to dealer lasting peace between the arch foes.
The worst clashes since Yerevan’s 2020 conflict with Baku erupted on Tuesday, claiming the lives of 215 individuals, earlier than hostilities ended on Thursday after worldwide mediation.
Pelosi mentioned her go to “is a robust image of the USA agency dedication to a peaceable, affluent and democratic Armenia, and a steady and safe Caucasus area.”
She is the highest-ranking US official to journey to Armenia for the reason that tiny impoverished nation’s 1991 independence from the Soviet Union.
U.S. Congressional Delegation led by Speaker of the U.S. Home of Representatives Nancy Pelosi arrived in Yerevan for her first go to to Armenia. Welcome Madam Speaker! pic.twitter.com/LeOQYKnpgh
— US Embassy, Armenia (@usembarmenia) September 17, 2022
The three-day go to “will play a giant position in making certain our safety,” Armenian parliament Speaker, Alen Simonyan, instructed journalists forward of her arrival.
Armenia and Azerbaijan have fought two wars — in 2020 and within the Nineteen Nineties — over the contested Nagorno-Karabakh area, Azerbaijan’s Armenian-populated enclave.
Along with France and Russia, the US co-chairs the Minsk Group of mediators, which had led decades-long peace talks between Baku and Yerevan below the OSCE aegis.
“We’ll convey the sturdy and ongoing help of the USA, as an OSCE Minsk Chair and longtime good friend to Armenia, for an enduring settlement to the battle in Nagorno-Karabakh,” Pelosi mentioned in a press release.
The most recent escalation got here as Armenia’s closest ally Moscow is distracted by its practically seven-month conflict in Ukraine.
Analysts have mentioned the hostilities have largely undone Western efforts to deliver Baku and Yerevan nearer to a peace deal.
With Moscow more and more remoted on the world stage following its February invasion of Ukraine, the European Union had taken a lead position in mediating the Armenia-Azerbaijan normalisation course of.
The six weeks of preventing in 2020 claimed the lives of greater than 6,500 troops from either side and ended with a Russian-brokered ceasefire.
Underneath the deal, Armenia ceded swathes of territory it had managed for many years, and Moscow deployed about 2,000 Russian peacekeepers to supervise the delicate truce.
Ethnic Armenian separatists in Nagorno-Karabakh broke away from Azerbaijan when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. The following battle claimed round 30,000 lives.
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